As Amazon Steps Up Tax Collections, Some Cities Are Left Out

As Amazon Steps Up Tax Collections, Some Cities Are Left Out Photo In Amazon’s arrangements to collect sales tax, “cities are really being left to themselves,” said Mayor Tim Keller of Albuquerque, which charges a 2.375 percent tax on top of New Mexico’s 5.125 percent sales tax. Credit Gabriella Marks for The New York Times When Amazon agreed last year to begin collecting sales tax in New Mexico, state officials celebrated what they said could be tens of millions of dollars in annual tax revenue.
But they aren’t cheering in Albuquerque City Hall. A year after that announcement, New Mexico’s largest city hasn’t seen a dime from Amazon. That’s because the online shopping giant’s deal applied only to the 5.125 percent statewide tax, not to the 2.375 percent tax tacked on by the City of Albuquerque.
“The loser in that arrangement is cities,” Mayor Tim Keller said. “Cities are really being left to themselves.”
Thanks in part to a series of deals with state governments in recent years, Amazo..

DFS profits plummet but shares surge as sofa chain defies high street gloom

The sofa company said it is optimistic about the months ahead, despite the current challenges faced by high street retailers
DFS profits more than halved in the first six months of the year, but the sofa company said it remains optimistic, despite current conditions wreaking havoc on the high street.
Shares rose more than 8 per cent in early trading as the group maintained an upbeat outlook for the rest of the year.
Read more UK retail sales pick up in February but outlook still weak In the first half, group sales increased by 4.1 per cent to £514m, from £494m this time last year, while revenue rose 4.3 per cent to £396m from £380m in the first half of 2017.
Revenue before the acquisition of Sofology, which DFS bought for £25m in August last year, was down 3.5 per cent to £366.5m. The group said this reflected “the expected challenging market environment”.
Profit before tax was £7m, compared with £16.7m in the first half of last year. DFS said this dip was due largely to £4…

Megabus adverts promising £1 tickets banned for misleading customers

Discount bus firm told to make more cheap fares available when it advertises £1 tickets
Megabus advertisements that promised customers fares starting “from £1” have been banned by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), after it found that tickets for just two routes were available at that price.
Two people complained about the adverts, which featured on Megabus’ website and on its Facebook page, after searching for tickets and failing to find any priced at £1.
Read more Australian beer advert banned for mocking redheads The complainants alleged that the claim “fares are from £1” was misleading and could not be substantiated. At the time, Megabus was promoting £1 tickets on its Aberystwyth to Birmingham route on its website, while also advertising new services from Leeds to different parts of Yorkshire with the statement “As always our fares are from £1*”. On a Facebook post, Megabus advertised day trips “from £1* London to Bath”.
According to Megabus, when the Aberystwyth a..

Heineken advert removed after Chance the Rapper brands it 'terribly racist'

Heineken has removed a commercial for its low-calorie beer after musician Chance the Rapper branded the advert “terribly racist”.
The ad, with the tagline “Sometimes, Lighter is Better” showed a bartender sliding a bottle of Heineken Light past a number of black people, before it reaches a light-skinned woman.
In the latest example of a company misjudging its marketing, the beer maker said it was pulling the commercial from all global markets.
Read more Heineken has made essentially the anti-Pepsi advert Hungary threatens to ban Heineken over 'communist' red star logo Tesco has stopped selling Heineken beers because of Brexit “While we feel the ad is referencing our Heineken Light beer, we missed the mark, are taking the feedback to heart and will use this to influence future campaigns,” the company said in a statement.
The decision to withdraw followed comments by Chicago-born Chance the Rapper on Monday. He accused the company of “purposely putting out noticeable raci..

When Professionals Rise Up, More Than Money Is at Stake

When Professionals Rise Up, More Than Money Is at Stake When 20,000 West Virginia teachers staged a rare statewide walkout, questions of pay and benefits dominated the headlines. But those concerns could not fully account for the teachers’ ferocious resolve. After all, stagnant wages and receding benefits have been an issue for workers for decades.
The missing variable appears to have been anxiety about their status as professionals.
Fred Albert, a math teacher and local union official in the Charleston area, said many felt that the Legislature had devalued their training and certification by proposing to let people teach a subject they hadn’t studied and had no experience in.
“If someone really wants to be a teacher, if they feel the call to be in the classroom with students, they need to go through the same programs we went through,” he said.
In that sense, Mr. Albert and his colleagues were in the mainstream of recent labor history. From doctors and nurses to government workers and ..

Bank financing of extreme fossil fuel soars, according to damning report

Shareholders must press banks to stop financing projects that will long term harm their businesses, not to mention the planet and everyone on it
Through the projects they fund, banks are some of the most environmentally destructive businesses on the planet.
The annual report by a group of non profit organisations makes this very clear. “Banking on Climate Change,” has found that financing for extreme fossil fuels – in other words the really nasty stuff – surged to a staggering $115bn (£81bn) in 2017.
It’s all the more disappointing given that the previous year (2016 when the Paris Climate Agreement was signed) had seen progress with a fall to $104bn from $126bn.
Read more Oil prices open above $70 on heightened Middle East tensions Shell and Eni accused of 'serious negligence' on Nigerian oil spill Public listing of Saudi oil company may be delayed until 2019 According to the report “no bank has yet truly aligned its business plan with the Paris Climate Agreement, wh..

Green Gove? Environment department consulting on bottle deposit scheme but hold your cheers

The scheme is aimed at improving recycling and cutting the vast tonnage of waste plastic finding its way into our oceans but campaigners want less talk more action
It’s not often thoroughly good ideas get an airing in modern Britain, all the more so if they involve plans to keep its children from having to live in a noxious rubbish tip that run the risk of irritating businesses.
But, wait, what’s this: Are we set to see belated launch of a deposit and return scheme covering drinks containers, whether plastic, glass, or metal, with the aim of encouraging recycling?
That’d be quite something from a Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs run by one of the more noxious politicians this country has produced in the form of Michael Gove.
Read more Government considering plastic bottle deposit scheme UK set to throw away a third more disposable cups Plastic pollution in sea set to treble in a decade, warn scientists Is this an attempt Mr Gove, a former newspaperman who knows ..

B&M ad for prosecco glass that can contain an entire bottle banned for encouraging excessive drinking

The advertising watchdog said the ad breached its code and went against health guidelines
A B&M Stores advert for a glass that can hold a full bottle of prosecco has been banned by the advertising watchdog for encouraging excessive drinking.
In a Facebook post last November, the product was promoted with the caption: “Like Prosecco? Then you’ll LOVE these glasses- they can hold a FULL bottle [3 heart eye emojis]! Plus, we’ve got Prosecco in store for just £5.99 so it’s a perfect time to stock up for Christmas. TAG the biggest Prosecco fan you know!”.
Read more B&M stores criticised over ‘pro-anorexia’ scales B&M also published a video which showed an entire bottle of prosecco being poured into one of the glasses, with accompanying on-screen text which read: “Introducing B&Ms Giant Prosecco Glass The perfect gift for Prosecco lovers! This glass holds an entire bottle of Prosecco So you don’t have to get up for refills Enjoy a glass with friends this festive season Please drink r..